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This Week With George Stephanopoulos

News/Business. (2013) Harry Reid; Michelle Rhee; Matthew Dowd; Paul Krugman; Carly Fiorina; Jorge Ramos; Lou Barletta. New. (CC)

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01:00:00

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Washington 17, Us 7, Chuck Hagel 6, D.c. 6, Harry Reid 5, America 4, Newtown 4, Michelle Rhee 4, John Mccain 3, Carly 3, Citibank 3, Alabama 3, Florida 3, Paul Krugman 3, Clinton 3, Chrysler 3, Matthew Dowd 3, Dianne Feinstein 2, Rubio 2, Intermezzo 2,
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  ABC    This Week With George Stephanopoulos    News/Business.  (2013) Harry Reid; Michelle Rhee; Matthew  
   Dowd; Paul Krugman; Carly Fiorina; Jorge Ramos; Lou Barletta....  

    February 3, 2013
    8:00 - 9:00am PST  

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president's agenda than harry reid, who we met for in the capitol on friday for this exclusive interview. he was feisty and confident, especially on this week's top issue, immigration reform. >> it has to get done. we have to work hard to get it done. it's really easy to write principles, to write legislation, much harder, and once we write the legislation, we have to get it passed, but i think things are looking really good. they're looking good for a number of reason, the right thing to do and, number two, the republicans can no longer stop this. they've tried it and it hasn't worked. look at what they tried to do to me a couple of years ago, look at what they tried to do with the president just this last time, and it just didn't work. >> but it still seems there will be a big sticking point, the biggest, i see, tie between border security and the path to citizenship for the illegal immigrants. senator rubio, part of the
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bipartisan group of senators said unless you have real triggers, he's not going to support the bill. >> that trigger is critically important, otherwise it will never happen. >> you are absolutely right. but every time i've talked about this, i say there are a few things we need. number one is border security, southern and northern border security. we have to do that. we have to have a pathway to legalization. we have to make sure that the employer sanctions work. it hasn't worked in the past and a few other things but, sure, we have to have security, but it's not going to -- we spent -- we have spent billions and billions of dollars on security, and that's why the border is more secure now. >> senator rubio says there has to be operational control of the borders. can you meet that standard? >> i don't know what that means, and i don't think he does either, but the fact is, we have some metrics we're talking about, some numbers, and we can do that. but this legislation is going to pass. if people are looking for excuses not to vote for it -- >> pass the senate, pass the house? >> well, it's certainly going to pass the senate, and it would be a bad day for our country and a bad day for the republican party
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if they continue to stand in the way of this, so the answer is, yes. >> one of the other big issues, the president said he wants gay and lesbians to be able to have a family preference. senator mccain has said we shouldn't come up with legislation for what he calls social issues. >> if we have gay folks in this country who have children, or they come from some other place they should be protected just like any other child. >> that's the position the republicans are saying that's too heavy to lift. >> if they're looking for an excuse not to support this legislation, this is another one, but the american people are past excuses. they want this legislation passed. >> there's a suspicion in the republican party that the president and democrats are looking for an issue here that they'd rather have the political issue than a policy achievement so they're going to lay out these principles and then not compromise at all. >> george, let's look at this with our brains, but also i think we need to look at it with our hearts. i mean, i have seen how things have changed in nevada.
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when i was a boy there, we had very few hispanics. now more than 40% of the children in a school district in clark county, 330,000, over 40% are hispanic kids. i have seen the dreamers come to me and explain to me we're americans. we know no other country. my heart says we have to do this. >> you're also right at the center of the gun debate, which is also pulling on a lot of hearts in america, as well, and so many including the national rifle association president david kean are wondering where you stand right now on the issue of gun legislation. >> he's under incredible pressure right now, so what -- so where harry reid ends up in this debate is anybody's guess. >> i think that's good. but let me just give you a little background here. i had guns from the time i was a little boy. i don't hunt anymore, but i did. i've got lots of guns. i keep them for sentimental reasons, but i was a police officer.
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right over here is my badge. i was a police officer. i carried a gun, and that's what i did to put myself through law school. my dad killed himself, shot himself with a gun, committed suicide, so i know a lot about guns, and there are things that i think we need to do. i have said to senator leahy, i want a bill to come out of the judiciary committee. i want you to hold hearings and go through the regular process. i want you to have a bill that allows us when it's brought to the floor to start offering amendments. if dianne feinstein by the time through the judiciary committee, if she doesn't have her assault weapons, at least let her have an opportunity to offer this amendment. >> will you vote for it? >> oh, i don't know. i, frankly -- and she knows i haven't read her amendment. i didn't vote for the assault weapons last time because it didn't make sense but i'll take a look at it. i think that we need to take a look at federal trafficking. i think that everyone acknowledges we should do something with background checks. >> universal background checks. >> yeah, we need to increase that.
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i'm still a supportor of the second amendment but -- >> how about restrictions on high-capacity magazines for am m munition? >> i think we definitely have to look at it. >> look or vote for it? >> let's see what it is. let's see what it is. you know, i know there are restrictions people had forever as to how many bullets you can have in a weapon, for example, if you want to hunt waterfowl you have to plug that to only shoot three times in a row. sure, there are things we can do. i'm happy to take a look at it. >> on the assault weapons ban, the one you voted against didn't make any sense, you said. but there have been independent studies which showed that when that ban was in place, the number of crimes using military-style assault weapons went down, and when it expired, they went up. >> george, with what took place in aurora, colorado, where that man walked in and murdered lots of people, what happened in newtown, newtown. >> newtown. >> newtown, yeah.
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i always mess that up a little bit. to see those little babies on the ground, one little girl, 5 years old, shot more than 10 times, of course, that breaks your heart, and i'm willing to take a look at it. >> you've been supported by the nra in the past. you support the second amendment, as you said, but one of your colleagues, senator bill nelson, has said that they've become extremists, that they're more representing gun manufacturers than the majority of gun owners. do you agree with that? >> george, i've been supported by the nra on occasion. i know wayne lapierre. he's always been extremely pleasant to me. we have a good relationship. so i am not here to demean the organization. >> but they are resisting almost everything you talked about and we talked about here, everything the president has called for. >> george, just because they resist it doesn't mean we can't do things. i mean, we have a lot of special interest groups that come and complain about things and we don't listen to them. we'll listen to them and make the right decision.
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>> but will you commit to getting something done? >> yes, i definitely want to do something with immigration for sure and i want to get something done on guns. >> then we've got the big issue -- >> george, let's not limit this conversation only to guns. there are other issues, very important issues, mental health, i mean, gee-whiz, we've got to do something on that. that's certainly the truth. >> let's talk about another huge issue this year, the sequester issue this year, the sequester across-the-board budget cut will hit on march 1st. you talked to leading republicans in the house like paul ryan, leading republicans in the senate like tom coburn. they say the sequester is going to hit. are they right? >> the american people need to understand that it's not as if we've done something for the debt. $2.6 trillion, $2.6 trillion already we've made in cuts. and all those cuts have come from nondefense programs. we need to keep our eye on the prize and continue doing something about spending, but i think that what we need to do is do some of the things that mitt
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romney talked about. he said there's some low-hanging fruit. there are a lot of tax loopholes that should be closed. i agree with him. we haven't done that. >> like which ones? >> well, oil subsidies. we have issues dealing with shipping jobs overseas. why don't we do some -- fill some of these -- >> i think if my numbers are correct, you do the oil and gas subsidy, i think that might save you something like 25 billion over ten years. >> no, it's more than that, george. but let's assume because the debt ceiling doesn't kick in till august, i believe that's what we'll have, but let's add these together. let's say you're right, 30 billion. but let's -- jobs overseas, we can dial that however we want because it's all -- a huge loss of revenue, corporate jets, tehre are all kind of things that are low-hanging fruit. >> you've heard the republicans across the board here. they're saying they're done with revenues for 2013. >> george, the american people are on our side. the american people don't believe in these austere things.
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we believe that the rich should contribute. we believe we should fill those tax loopholes, get rid of them, i should say, and that's where we need to go. >> but that's a debate that's been had, as you know, for the last couple of months, last couple of years and doesn't appear it will get solved next month so the sequester will hit. >> george, that's what they said two or three days before the fiscal cliff. no revenue. well, we got about $700 billion in revenue. there's still more we can do. >> are you saying that for -- to lift the sequester, first of all, it's going to have to include some new revenue, whatever you agree to? >> without any question, and there are some efforts being made to only get rid of the sequester as it relates to defense. i repeat, $2.6 trillion already all coming from nondefense. if we're going to have a sequester, defense is going to have to do their share. >> your position on lifting the sequester, on avoiding a government shutdown and on extending the debt limit beyond
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august is any one of those deals must include new revenues. >> and, yes, the answer is definitely yes. and i've got a pretty good fan base for that, the american people. republicans, democrats and independents. >> what do you say to the republicans who say that you're part of the problem here? john boehner, clearly you had words with him during the fiscal cliff negotiations. you called him a dictator. he said something i cannot repeat to you. and senator mcconnell in the end of the fiscal cliff negotiations needed to go around you so he could work with vice president biden. is there a breakdown between you and the republican leaders in congress? >> joe biden came here and spoke to us this week. had a good visit. i introduced him by saying sometimes there needs to be a good cop and a bad cop. abd i had a good time for a while being the bad cop, so it worked out. so we -- joe biden did not talk to mitch mcconnell until he talked to me. >> are you still the bad cop? >> no, i'm a good cop now.
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i have a good relationship with mitch mcconnell. i really admire -- i think boehner is doing the best he can. he's had a tremendous burden. he's had tea party folks, but even they recognize that they don't have the clout that they thought they had, and that's why we were able to get the debt ceiling extended. >> chuck hagel had a pretty rough ride at his confirmation hearings. >> were you correct or incorrect. >> my reference to the -- >> are you going to answer the question, senator hagel? >> he seemed to lose some of the republican support he may have had. are you still confident after that performance that the democrats will stand behind him and he'll get confirmed? >> sure. this is a short interview, but if you interviewed me for eight hours like they interviewed him in the senate this week, you and i would both glove up a little bit. so chuck hagel is a fine man. he was a good senator. i served with him. he's a republican. that should be a plus. we need more, and i think he
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will be an outstanding, terrific secretary of defense. >> some of your fellow democrats seem concerned though by what they saw as a shaky performance. >> this was eight hours. give the guy a break. i thought he did pretty good. >> your incoming chairman of the senate foreign relations committee, senator robert menendez, is now reviewing his relationship with a major contributor out of florida. it appears the fbi is investigating that relationship, as well. are you comfortable with him serving as chairman of the senate foreign relations committee as these investigations continue? >> he was a leader in the house. he's been a leader in the senate. he's chairman of that committee. he'll do a wonderful job, and he's also an integral part of what we do with immigration reform. so i have the utmost confidence in him. as to the rest of the investigation, that will have to be handled the way it's handled around here, in-depth, and the ethics committee are taking a look at it, so that's --
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>> there's some real serious allegations here. are you confident he did nothing wrong? >> oh, i have confidence he did nothing wrong, but that's what investigations are all about. >> but you're fine with him serving while the investigation goes forward? >> he will -- he has been and will be a great member of that committee. >> final question, how is this congress going to be remembered? >> well, we'll have to wait and see. it's really early. one way it will be remembered, we changed rules here in the senate that will make the senate a better place, and i think there's a better feeling we can get some things done under what we call regular order. that is, stop the procedural gimmick and start legislating voting on things we may not want to vote on but that's what we're here for. >> thanks for your time today. and when we come back, our powerhouse round table weighs in on immigration, guns and that shaky performance by chuck hagel at his confirmation hearings and nobel prize winner paul krugman on the sizzling dow in january and our super bowl picks all coming up. [ female announcer ] going to sleep may be easy, but when you wake up
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what we could not get was a single republican, including the 20 who had previously voted for comprehensive immigration reform, to step up and say we'll work with you to make this happen. >> you promised that, and a promise is a promise, and with all due respect but you didn't keep that promise. >> i am happy to take responsibility for the fact that we didn't get it done, but i did not make a promise that i would get everything done 100% when i was elected as president. univision anchor jorge ramos on immigration reform and joins during the campaign on immigration reform and he joins our roundtable right now along with republican congressman lou barletta, our own matthew dowd, paul krugman of "the new york times" and princeton and carly fiorina, former ceo of hewlett-packard. let's begin with immigration, jorge. you were very tough on the president during the campaign, he laid out his principles this
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week in nevada and you also saw a bipartisan group of senators do the same thing and harry reid optimistic. are you? >> i am. it's the first time i don't remember ever seeing the president and members of both parties rushing to beat the other to present an immigration proposal. i haven't seen that. it's the most important immigration news in the last 38 years and especially because it includes a path to citizenship. >> on both sides. >> yeah, so there is no amnesty. they'll pay penalties. they'll pay taxes back. they'll go back to the end of the line, and it might take up to 10 to 15 years to become u.s. citizens, so it is definitely still the promise of -- >> the man not joining the bandwagon sitting next to you. >> we're equal, either citizens or noncitizens, the promise and this is what it's going to achieve. >> let me explain where you come from, you come from pennsylvania, from hazelton. you passed ordinances that would punish landlords who rented to illegal immigrants and punish employers who hired then.
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you intend to fight this effort for immigration reform in the house. >> this is 1986 all over again and that was at the time they told the person -- people, this is one time only, 1.5 million illegal aliens would get amnesty and ended up being 3 million. the same thing will happen today, george, when we're offering a pathway to citizenship without knowing that we could secure our borders, to put it in simple terms, you wouldn't replace your carpet at home if you still had a hole in the roof, and that's what we're talking about. any time you start waving a carrot such as american citizenship without securing the borders, that number that we have today, i believe, will double or even triple. >> how do you answer that argument that deportations have gone up, the number of people crossing our borders illegally has gone down? >> well, you know, that's -- we can argue about that all day long on whether or not this administration -- i don't know how anyone could argue this administration is serious about enforcing our laws when they're suing the state of arizona because the federal government has caused the problem and arizona wants to defend itself as well as another example is the president's prosecutorial
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discretion where he is prohibiting law enforcement agents from enforcing the law, in fact, there are i.c.e. agents who are suing the administration. >> matthew dowd, the congressman brings up 1986 and also in 2000, president george w. bush's second term he tried immigration reform. didn't get very far. >> well, i don't think the president -- obviously i worked for him then that president bush tried really that hard and put his weight behind social security reform which turned out to be a disaster in the midst of that and didn't really push that, but he had a problem with his own party in that. president bush had a problem with the republican party in that. the problem i think for republicans is and here's -- i'm an irish immigrants who great, great grandfather came over here. whether he was legal or not, when he was 17 years old in the midst of a society that said no irish need apply is that america's always benefited economically and spiritually and morally from immigrants in this country, and we have a situation now, there's 52 million latinos that live in this country, more than 40 million of them are here legally.
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something has to be done. republicans know this. republicans know that if you put together a package of border control, of controlling the border and a path to citizenship, it's going to happen. if republicans don't do this, it's not as if latinos say immigration is my top issue, the economy is their top issue. if they don't do this, republicans could make themselves the minority party for the next generation. >> two things, one is this is not -- we're not going to deport the people who are already here. we're not actually going to reverse this. the fact of immigration is going to happen, the question about what we'll do about border control, some of that in these proposals but in any case that's almost a separate issue. one is regularizing the status of people here, basically making them legal, bringing them under labor law, all of that, how could you really be against that? it's, you know, got to be good for everybody to do that. the republican party has a problem. the leadership understands that they cannot -- they're doomed if they are only the party of old
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white people, to put it bluntly. the problem is their base is old white people, and so the rank and file, which answers to base, which doesn't fear democrats but does fear tea party challengers may not go along, but this is clearly -- there's no possible -- >> and the business community getting behind it, as well. >> yes, and it's important to remember some facts about the attempted immigration reform in 2007. the guest worker program amendment, which failed and which killed immigration reform, was voted down by democrats, barack obama among them, barbara boxer of california, a state that desperately needs a guest worker program, why, because organized labor was against it. i also am very optimistic about this bill. it is carefully crafted to acknowledge that we have to deal with the people who are here today, but also that we have to actually reform our legal immigration system so that we have a guest worker program that works, so that we have border security, so that we don't have 16 different visa programs and many of the people who are here
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illegally have overstayed their visas, in other words, we have a host of problems that have to be solved. this gang of eight bill i think is a first step towards solving them. what i hope, what i hope is that while it's easy to always blame the republicans, i hope that the democrats and organized labor will not push their opposition to a guest worker program so far that they kill the whole deal because they did it last time. >> let me say something. it is amazing that the border is not secure. i mean, first barack obama deported more than 1.5 million. and there are more agents than ever before, apprehensions have gone down, the number of undocumenteds has gone from 12 million to 11 million and the citizens along the border with mexico along the border are the safest. so if you wait to do something until the border is completely secure, i don't know exactly what you're talking about. >> the last word. >> we have a couple of problems. number one, 40% of all the people in this country illegally didn't cross the border. they came here on a visa that expired and disappeared into our system, and we can't track them.
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number two, one thing we're missing in this debate about illegal immigration is the cost. heritage foundation did a study that after the taxes are realized by our country by those who are here illegally, it will cost $2.6 trillion in medicare, social security -- >> no, no, the congressional budget office -- >> that's pocket change. the net cost of all of this is pocket change. it's really a small number. >> this is going to be politics at its best if people can't forge a compromise that will keep democrats on board and republicans on board. this will get done. but if president barack obama pushes too hard to win and cause the other party to lose, this thing is going to come apart. >> much more to the economy than when they take -- the congressional budget office is saying -- >> they only have ten years. the cbo -- >> no. >> the heritage foundation. [ all talking at once ] >> it's very small numbers. >> because here's the thingk, here's the thing, because so many will be at the lower end of
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the economic ladder, what they will be paying in taxes because they will be earning less and what they'll be taking out in programs that are already going broke, we're not going to be able to afford it. number two, the people who -- >> and the city always saying that they're going to contribute -- >> but, remember, we're -- >> we are here and will be bringing them into the system which mostly means -- >> but why don't we talk about those -- >> how about the legal immigrants, how about the legal hispanic immigrants, do you think it's good for them to have 20 or 15 million people compete for their jobs when they came to america for an opportunity? >> it also is a -- >> that's a small -- >> reforming the legal -- reforming the legal immigration system is on the table in the gang of eight bill. it has to be on the table. business support requires just common sense requires that we not simply say, 11 million people who are here illegally, okay, we'll deal with your status, and we're not going to fix any of these other problems.
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>> that has to be the last word. we have to take a break. more roundtable ahead including the president's latest move. what does this picture prove exactly? plus all the early buzz over tonight's super expensive super bowl ads, all that plus education activist michelle rhee in our sunday spotlight. spot on earth. (all) the gulf! it doesn't matter which of our great states folks visit. mississippi, alabama, louisiana or florida, they're gonna love it. shaul, your alabama hospitality is incredible. thanks, karen. love your mississippi outdoors. i vote for your florida beaches, dawn. bill, this louisiana seafood is delicious. we're having such a great year on the gulf, we've decided to put aside our rivalry. now is the perfect time to visit anyone of our states. the beaches and waters couldn't be more beautiful. take a boat ride, go fishing or just lay in the sun. we've got coastline to explore and wildlife to photograph. and there's world class dining with our world famous seafood. so for a great vacation this year, come to the gulf. its all fabulous but i give florida the edge. right after mississippi.
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lots more roundtable coming up, but first "the sunday funnies." >> last week the iranian government successfully launched a live monkey into space. this is the alleged iranian space monkey. based on the photograph, i'm guessing he didn't volunteer for the mission. [ laughter ] >> four years hillary clinton served as -- the former senator from new york served as the secretary of state. four years. had a moving ceremony today where hillary officially turned over the pantsuit and -- [ laughter ] >> -- it's all yours, john.
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be courageous. americans are counting on you. thank you. >> echoes of jim brady from gabby giffords more than 20 years later in that hearing before the senate judiciary committee. we're back with the roundtable, and, matthew, i come to you but before i come to you, i want to put out that new salvo in the debate from president obama. you saw that picture they released of the president's skeet shooting at camp david back in august after he said it was something he did all the time up in camp david, and david plouffe, his former senior adviser puts out a tweet saying "attention skeet birthers, make our day, let the photoshop conspiracies begin" answering skepticism about whether president obama was really a shooter. was it smart to put out that photo? >> i think they had to put out the photo. if you go back a few days i don't think it was smart for him to make that announcement in "the new republic," i shoot skeet all the time.
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it reminds me of margaret thatcher, which is being a skeet shooter, being a hunter is a lot like being a lady. if you have to tell people, you're probably not. nobody is going to believe him because of the picture and that makes him look like he's pandering, and as carly said on the break, he is pandering in that and i think that's the problem with it. it's sort of a distraction from the debate. i don't think they should have ever said that. nobody believes that. >> you heard, carly fiorina, from harry reid right there that the president is going to have a fairly tough time with his own democrats in getting what he wants through the senate. >> yeah, well, i think that's clearly true. this is a very emotional issue. i honestly think both sides have overplayed it. i think personally the nra has overplayed it. we're gun owners at home. >> coming out against background checks. >> yes, i mean i think there's widespread support for universal background checks, however, universal background checks won't work unless we deal with our mental health system and
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actually untie the knot of privacy rules so the right information can be given to people, but universal background checks, dealing with the mental health system, personally i would even support banning high-capacity magazines. i think banning assault weapons we've proved doesn't work so instead of just doing something for show, let's actually focus on solving the problem. >> but what really strikes me -- i don't know how this plays, you know, what will happen. what strikes me is we've gotten a glimpse into the mind-set of the pro-gun people and seen certainly wayne lapierre and some of these others, it's bizarre, they have this vision that we're living in a "mad max" movie and the idea that we have a police force that provides public safety is somehow totally impractical despite the fact that is, in fact, the way we live, so i think that the terms of the debate have shifted. now the craziness of the extreme pro-gun lobby has been revealed and that has got to move the debate -- it's got to move the legislation at least some degree. >> are you comfortable with
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where the nra has been on this? >> i am. this is a perfect example why people believe washington is broke. this horrific incident in newtown, and here what is our debate? it's focusing on guns when there is not one person at this table who really believes that that's the root of what happened there and -- when we have people that get into the mind-set that they want to harm people, as a former mayor, i know people will get guns no matter what laws we pass, just like the illegal drug -- >> i caught you on a false statement there because at least i do believe that guns are the root. there are crazy people everywhere, but mass murderers are a lot more common here than -- >> you believe guns are more important than dealing with mental health and our culture. is our culture lending itself that we're raising children that are desensitized to murder, to killing people. >> i love that the international differences -- countries that have effective gun control have a lot fewer -- >> would banning -- >> would banning spoons stop obesity? >> banning large soda drinks has
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helped. >> there's high tolerance for violence in this country. after columbine, after virginia tech, after aurora, we should have done something and we haven't. sometimes it seems that it's only minor changes that we're talking about, even a ban on assault weapons or background checks when we're talking about high-capacity magazines, i mean, we know what works. i mean, in japan it works. but as a country, i don't think we are willing to even raise the second amendment. >> the pulse said something that is -- >> we don't want to do that. we have to recognize that. >> paul said something illustrative. what paul just did alump everybody together as a crazy, radical gun owner. >> not so. >> yes, so you're condemning people -- >> no, the problem with gun owners is fine, but the lobbying groups, the nra is revealed as an insane organization and matters quite a lot. >> i said at the outset i think the nra overplayed its hand. >> more than that.
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more than just overplaying its hand. >> universal background checks, on the other hand, we need to say -- let's just say dianne feinstein's bill passed banning assault weapons, it won't do anything to solve the problem. >> but after the last assault weapons ban, i'll bring this to matthew dowd, there was some evidence by independent experts who looked at it and said, listen, it didn't solve the problem completely, but when the ban was in place, fewer people were killed by assault weapons and when it was lifted, more were killed by assault weapons. >> george, the problem -- >> it said more people bought assault weapons right before that ban went into place, and as soon as it was lifted, they bought more and now have 300 million of them. >> part of the problem is and i think the congressman said this, but part of the problem is all the facts on both sides get left on the table and get into this thing where everybody says this is what we need to do and many of the facts get left on the table. we all know that if you only do something on assault weapons, it's not going to solve the problem that happened. if you only doing on if you only do something on high-capacity, it will not solve the problem. if you only do something and the
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idea that a gun in the home will make someone safer, all the facts say it's not true. the likelihood of someone in a domestic violence with a gun available, a woman is eight times more likely to get killed. if a woman -- a gun in the home, three times more likely she'll get murdered. everybody believes the facts. i don't think it's a bad thing. most that own guns, i'm a gun owner like carly thinks people are unwilling to say let's get rid of the second amendment. maybe we should have a debate about that. >> that is a huge debate. i want to move on to the economy. a lot to cover and paul krugman, i want to come to you. the dow hit 14,000. >> right. >> on friday. capping just a torrid january. five straight weeks of gains, this comes on top of some encouraging news on jobs. >> right. >> some encouraging news on housing and manufacturing, and i was struck by a line in "the washington post" that said "the biggest threat now to the recovery may be washington, d.c." >> that's been true all along. what we've actually been seeing is -- let me put it this way, we've seen falling
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government, spending particularly, spending, purchases are good, services and government -- an unprecedented decline in that that's the biggest threat to the recovery. >> and caused slippage in the fourth quarter. >> partly statistical illusion but partly defense spending which for some reason had a big negative blip. i've been doing a study of this. if spending had grown in this business cycle the way it did in the last one under bush or under reagan, we would probably have an unemployment rate that was not much above 6% right now so it's this washington craziness and, of course, the threat of the sequester that is the biggest threat. this recovery is actually -- it should be much, much faster. we still have more than 3 million people who have been out of work for more than a year. that's terrible. but we are, in fact, gaining momentum. housing is recovering, the labor market is slowly recovering. yeah, washington may mess it up. >> do you agree? >> i think it's important to remember when we talk about the economy, that a private sector job and a public sector job are not the same things. they're not equivalent. i'm not saying public sector
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jobs aren't important. but a private sector job pays for itself. a private sector job creates other jobs. a public sector job is paid for by taxpayers. the government does not spend and invest money as efficiently as the private sector. there's all kinds of data to support that. so it isn't simply a matter of saying, well, whatever job is created out there, if it's a bureaucrat or in washington, d.c. or a small business owner hiring another employee, those are not -- >> but public sector jobs, it is now a bureaucrat in washington, d.c. >> oh, it is. >> when we talk about public sector jobs, we look at the ones that have been lost in large numbers in this, it's basically school teachers. don't think about bureaucrats. it's school teachers. we've laid off hundreds of thousands of school teachers and we talk about the cuts in public spending that have happened. they are not, you know, some god awful who knows what. it's actually public investment, it's largely fixing potholes and repairing bridges so, you know, you have this image of these wasteful bureaucrats doing god
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knows what, and what we've seen is an incredible drought of basic infrastructure and laying off hundreds of thousands of school teachers. >> it is a fact that virtually every department in every organization in washington, d.c. has seen its budget increase for the last 40 years. that money is being paid to hire people. the number of people who are -- of course there are some -- >> almost no -- >> of course there are some police officers. i'm not saying that. >> but that bulk of public sector employees are at the state and local level, largely school teachers plus police officers plus firefighters and your notiong that it's all these bureaucrats is a myth that's used. >> it's not a myth. it's a fact. it's not a myth. it's a fact. we don't have -- >> we heard from harry reid he's hoping that the sequester doesn't kick in. but, congressman, i noticed from top republican leaders seem to be accepting the fact that we're going to have these
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across-the-board budget cuts and talking to white house officials you get the sense they are prepared to go through with it, as well. that could be a big hit on the economy. >> i do believe my sense the sequester is going to go through. it was put in place to -- we didn't get to this point but it is and it's a law and i believe we understand it's not what we want on our side. i know the defense cuts are very hard for many of us to swallow, but at the end of the day, washington needs to do something about its spending. we are spiraling out of control. this country can't survive. we can't sustain the spending that's going on. >> matthew, what's your sense of what the public reaction is going to be because it does appear that the sequester is going to hit for at least a period of time, these across-the-board cuts and maybe at the end of march. >> i think the problem that exists long before all this is that the public looks at washington as completely out of sync of where they are in their life. they think washington is totally dysfunctional and don't trust what is out of washington. they do not trust washington. and until that trust is rebuilt part of it has to do with the fiscal mess. part of it has to do with the lack of leadership, but as they watch washington day in and day
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out, you look at the number of trust in washington, fdr understood there. if you go back and look at fdr and john f. kennedy and all the folks that basically said we want government to be even more involved, they understood people have to trust government before you get government more involved. and that's a huge part of the problem. >> that might lead to another recession. i don't know. you know much more that about but that's the important thing. >> another important thing to say here is that sequester is not nearly as scary as the debt ceiling debate was. we thought the whole financial system might collapse. if we go a month into the sequester, it's not a big deal. it's going to be painful. it's going to be a big debate. it'll slow growth in that quarter, but this is something where actually my understanding is the white house thinks that this -- they will win this. that if it happens, that, you know, everybody will look back but the republicans will look worse and in the end they will fold. >> i'm hearing the same things, carly. they believe in the end you'll see the same thing happen that happened on the debt limit that the republicans will have to accept some new revenues even though they say they're not going to do it now.
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>> well, you know, first of all, i think this white house spends way too much time thinking about political wins and not enough time thinking about actually solving the problem. tax reform is a way to get more revenues. if we would close loopholes, lower rates, simplify the tax code, there is broad bipartisan support for that. it would increase revenues. it would help small business owners. >> but you're for tax reform that increases revenues. a lot of republican leaders are saying they would only do neutral revenue tax reform. >> in my particular opinion what we need to be competitive, what we need to help small business owners is to lower all the rates, close all the loopholes, which, frankly, benefit big business, not small business, vastly simplify the code, but going back to matthew's point, there was an interesting poll in "the washington post," 53% of the american people believe the federal government is a threat in their lives. that's an incredible figure, and what it says is that people truly believe that they can't trust the federal government. >> and, george, part of that --
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>> it's something that people have to deal with. >> a big part of the problem is leaders are now left with this pie. what you basically had republicans say, don't touch defense, we don't want to cut defense, not all of them but so many say don't touch defense. democrats say do not touch entitlement programs. do not touch entitlement programs. in a year that will be -- those two things will be 85% add interest on the debt, 85% of the total budget which leaves only 15% looking forward, what are we going to do? how will we create an economy and neither side is willing to have that debate. both sides in my view are willing to basically deficit spend and run us into a fiscal problem. republicans are unwilling to touch revenue so say let -- let's deficit spend and democrats are unwilling to address government spending so they deficit spend. both sides which is why this country does not trust washington. >> i want to get quickly to another issue, chuck hagel's confirmation hearing this week. not even the white house would defend his performance. here's a piece of it. >> i support the president's strong position on containment, as i said. if i said that, meant to say
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that i -- obviously his position on containment, we don't have a position on containment. >> we do have a position on containment, which is that we do not favor containment. >> he was kind of a surprise there from chuck hagel, probably not going to hurt his chances of confirmation, is even getting some republicans -- >> i think he's going to make it but if you have to clarify your clarification, you're in trouble, no. i mean if we compare, for instance, what he went through with what hillary clinton did with the benghazi hearings, he had two different perspectives. hillary clinton was strong and solid and getting ready for 2016. at the same time, chuck hagel, he seemed timid, sensitive and -- >> you're in the house. >> you don't want that. >> you're in the house. some republican senators considering whether to filibuster or not. do you think that would be wise? >> i'm not certain if it will be wise or not. i know there's some concerns with his positions about israel and whether or not that will carry water at the end of the day but, you know, again, it will be a decision that the senate is going to make and really not in the house.
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>> george, i mean i think obviously he could have done better, but to me there's a couple of things about that. first, it would be unfortunate that this first time we'd have an enlisted person -- someone who's an enlisted man, average military guy to run the department of defense that will make decisions on -- first time that will ever happen in our history is important for many soldiers who feel disconnected from the process because of somebody's never really understood that. the other thing is you watch the hearing. i watched most of the hearing and what you come away with is nobody is willing to ask questions in any of these to actually elicit information that might be helpful. >> all theater. >> it's all theater, and all how do i put points on the board. john mccain or senator graham is how do i put a point against him. the democrats make a long speech and how do i put a point for him. these used to be a long time ago let's find out how he would manage the defense department. let's find out what his values are that might be important for us to know. none of that happens. it's all about making points. >> what's clear is that
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president obama miscalculated a bit thinking if i put forward someone with an "r" next to their name, i'll have an easier time here. clearly that's not the case. but i also think that, you know, john mccain certainly did his bit for his country and languished in a prison of war camp for 5 1/2 years. i think john mccain and lindsey graham's concerns are real. in the end they probably will not carry the day, but in a critical time with the threats we face, it's totally legitimate, whoever the nominee was, to be grilled on what their point of. >> one final issue before we go. big night, the super bowl, the ads have already been sold, $3.8 million to $4 million for a 30-second ad. this year a little something different. we've seen so many before the game. my favorite is going to nominate it first, the volkswagen come on be happy ad. >> yeah. wicked cup, mr. james. julia, turn the frown the other way around. >> hey, you're from minnesota, right? >> yes, the land of 10,000 lakes.
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>> jorge, your pick? >> godaddy.com. that between the model and the nerd went on and on and on. i think it was really raw and will be a great commercial. >> there's bar rafaeli and she's going to lip-lock with that young man that you see right there. >> you cut it. >> all right. well, the mercedes ad with the devil, willem dafoe as the devil caught my attention mostly because of the background music. because i remember when the rolling stones sang about, you know, making fun of ads which say it can't be a manic, don't smoke cigarettes like me and now sympathy for the devil in a mercedes ad. age of aquarius. >> mine is one we haven't seen which is the chrysler ad. they bought an ad in this. i thought last year's chrysler ad was the clint eastwood narrated halftime in america ad. they've done great ads. all from detroit. paul and i have a different
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piece. we have a different piece, imported, i have the chrysler car but looking forward to the chrysler ad. >> i like the allstate man ad and it's probably based on some of their ads before. it just strikes me -- >> goes all the way back to the garden of eden. pretty great ad, it really was. thanks for your contributions today. jorge ramos will stick around to answer your facebook questions for our web extra and coming up sunday spotlight shines on controversial education activist michelle rhee. she just did a report card for schools in every state and we've got the grades. 2k3wr5ids. this is for real this time. step seven point two one two. grades. verify and lock. command is locked. five seconds. three, two, one. standing by for capture. the most innovative software on the planet... dragon is captured. is connecting today's leading companies to places beyond it. siemens. answers.
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time now for our sunday spotlight this week on michelle rhee. an education activist with a knack for drawing attention and controversy. she made the cover of "time" back in 2008 when heading the d.c. public schools and left that job under a bit of fire after dismissing 36 principals and ending teacher tenure. now head of a nationwide organization students first, michelle has a new book out called "radical" and joins us now. good morning, michelle. >> good morning. >> you have this report on every state in the nation and how they're doing on education. and you are a tough grader. no a's, a couple of "b" minuses and more than two-thirds received a "d" or "f" overall. that is a pretty dismal assistment of where things stand. >> it shows how far we have to go. we as students first strongly believe there's no shortage of
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educators out there who are innovative and wanting to do the right thing and also know that all of our kids can learn at the highest levels when they're in the right school environment. the problem is that these educators and kids are trapped in a school system that -- and a bureaucracy that's really driven by antiquated rules and policies so we seek to change those policies and the environment they operate in. >> we've seen two presidents in a row now who fancy themselves and push education reform, so what's the single most important thing that can be done right now on a national level to fix our schools? >> well, i think it is focusing on changing those laws and policies, and we think that three different areas are critical. first making sure that there's a highly effective teacher in front of every single child every single day. the second is informing parents and giving them options so that no family ever feels like they're trapped in a failing school, and third is making sure that we're using taxpayer dollars wisely and we're governing school systems well. >> we've also seen that there's been a backlash, though, against how we assess how schools and teachers are doing. just this week, teachers in seattle saying we're not going to go forward with these standardized tests anymore.
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a lot of parents resisting it, as well. >> yeah. well, i think we've got to strike a balance. you don't want a situation where there's an overemphasis on testing, but at the same time, we had decades where there was no accountability whatsoever, and our school system was graduating kids who didn't have basic skills and knowledge. they couldn't read and do math appropriately and at grade level, and that means they couldn't find appropriate jobs, so we had to strike the balance between making sure that we're not overemphasizing good tests but yet making also sure that we're holding kids and schools accountable for what kids know and are able to do. >> i love your title "radical." you charged hard in washington, d.c. you made a lot of enemies pretty quickly and some thought you seemed to enjoy the rough and tumble a little bit too much. there was even that camera crew that followed you as you actually fired a principal. so do you have any second thoughts about the style that you showed in d.c.? >> yeah, well, my style is very
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deliberative and very focused on doing what's right for kids, and so i wouldn't change that so much, but what i did learn about my experiences in d.c. is that what we were doing i think were absolutely the right things. i needed to focus a little bit more on how we were communicating those things and how we were doing things, so should i have fired ineffective principals, absolutely. should i have done so on national tv, probably not. >> bill turk, the education writer for "the washington post" who covered you and reviewed your book said you come off as a radical humbled by a dose of realism. is that fair? >> i think that is fair. it is interesting because when i first got to d.c. people said, well, gosh, she's so radical, she's a lightning rod, and in my mind i was doing things that seemed obvious to me, closing failing schools, removing ineffective people, cutting a central office bureaucracy and finally i came to the conclusion
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that if bringing some commonsense solutions to a dysfunctional system makes me a radical then so be it. >> okay, michelle rhee, thanks very much. the book is called "radical." it is out tomorrow. a milestone. each week at this time we honor american service members killed in action, but this week the pentagon did not release any names of u.s. service members killed in afghanistan or iraq. that's the first time that's happened since july 2011. overnight however there was a tragic reminder that the horrors of war echo far beyond the battlefield. navy s.e.a.l. chris kyle whose best-telling book "american sniper" details four tours in iraq was killed yesterday at a gun range in texas. the shooter believed to be a former marine whom kyle was counseling through a struggle with ptsd. in iraq kyle was awarded two silver stars and five bronze stars for bravery. we honor his service. and that is all for us today. thanks for sharing part of your sunday with us. check out "world news with david muir" tonight, and i'll see you tomorrow on "gma."
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>> in the news super bowl sunday is finally here as 49er fans and police get ready for the big game. and some cajun flavor for fans in new orleans. we will have a live report from abc7 news reporter katie marzullo from outside the super
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bowl. >> partly cloudy skies. temperatures near 50 right now from the emeryville camera. there is an end in site for the extended dry period. extended dry period. i'll show it to you next on [ male announcer ] citibank's app for ipad makes it easy for anne to manage her finances when she's on the go. even when she's not going anywhere. citibank for ipad. easier banking. standard at citibank.
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